Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Mister Peepers - The TV Series|
Actors: Wally Cox, Marion Lorne, Patricia Benoit, Tony Randall, Joseph Foley
Genres: Comedy, Television
Mr. Peepers (Wally Cox) is a shy science teacher at Jefferson Junior High... but what makes Mr. Peepers so unique is that, although he seems to be mild mannered, easily bullied, baffled and befuddled by every day life, he ... more »
Mister Peepers and Kinescope
David | Utah | 12/18/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The previous reviewer, Bennet Pomerantz, is mixed up about early TV time shifting techniques. In the early 1950s the only method available for recording live TV was the Kinescope process, in which a 16mm or 35mm film camera was mounted in front of a television monitor and the program was recorded on film, not tape. Although Bing Crosby Enterprizes experimented with a crude form of video tape as early as 1951, the picture quality was unacceptable. Usable video tape didn't become available until 1956 when Ampex introduced the first video tape recorders. Desilu Productions early on decided to film the I Love Lucy shows instead of airing them live, because non networked TV outlets complained about the poor quality of the Kinescope filmed copies that other live shows gave them to air. Thus directly filming shows instead of presenting them live while simultaneously recording them on Kinescope film for immediate rebroadcast became popular. Some artists, such as Jackie Gleason, insisted that all their Kinescopes be saved for use many years in the future. That's why all the Gleason shows, and aparently these Peepers Kinescopes too, are still with us. Many of the Kinescopes that were "bicycled" to outlying affiliates survived, but most were either trashed or just plain lost. The shows that were directly filmed instead of broadcast live and Kinescoped had a much better chance of survival, and the picture quality is vastly better. Just how good these Mister Peepers DVDs will look and sound is yet to be discovered when they are released. I hope the studio did a good job on them, because I recall watching this show with my dad in the early '50s and we really enjoyed it. I hope they include the vintage commercials too."
Only-A-Child | 02/27/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The 100 black and white half-hour episodes of the early situation comedy "Mr. Peepers" were originally broadcast from 1952-55 on NBC. Like a lot of baby boomers this and "Ding Dong School" are my earliest memories of television. Since both ran later in syndication it is hard to tell how many of these memories are actually tied to the original broadcasts.
"Mr. Peepers" is worth checking out for more than its nostalgia value. It represents a very different style of situation comedy than shows like "The Honeymooners" and "I Love Lucy". The genre could have gone in two different directions in those days and ended up taking the loud abrasive path of those two shows; which is probably why they still seem somewhat contemporary.
"Mr. Peepers", which was differentiated by its intelligent restrained tone, may appear slow and dull in comparison. But it's really more a matter of adjusting to the different style. Once you get into the characters it should hold the interest of intelligent viewers. Credit should be give to the show's producer, Fred Coe, a key figure in early television whose dramatic anthologies are also worth checking out ("Philco Television Playhouse", "Lights Out", "Playhouse 90", "Producers Showcase", "Playwrights 56", "Fireside Theatre", etc.) even on kinescope.
"Mr. Peepers" offered a much more gentle style with Wally Cox (to be the voice of "Underdog" a few years later) in the title role, Robinson Peepers, a mild-mannered high school science teacher. His glasses were his trademark and a symbolic link to his name and role as a passive observer.
The series provided Cox with an outstanding supporting cast. Tony Randall played his brash best friend, history teacher Harvey Weskit. Jack Warden played Frank Whip, the loud gym teacher whose mild bullying gave the show most of its conflict elements.
There is some love interest competition involving the school's nurse, Nancy Remington (Patricia Benoit), with viewers quickly aligning with Mr. Peepers who seems a much better match for the gentle Nancy. Their on-screen marriage near the end 1953-54 season captured national attention, an early version of the "Who Shot J.R.?" frenzy.
Then again, what do I know? I'm only a child."
As delightful as it gets
MissPammy | 10/03/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This DVD set is really fun to watch. Wally Cox is utterly charming as Mr. Peepers, and his comedic timing is perfection. The hilarious predicaments he gets into are slightly offbeat and entertaining. The rest of the cast is excellent, too, particularly the dithering Marion Lorne and the great actors Walter Matthau and Tony Randall. I intended to just watch the first couple of shows and then save the rest for later, but I couldn't stop watching. Now I've watched them all twice, and I've only had the set for two days. This set was recorded from the original kinescopes, which were all that was available, and in the first show and a couple of subsequent ones, there is some difficulty hearing the words in a place or two. The series is also in black and white, of course, but these drawbacks are minimal compared to the quality of the acting. I can't get enough of Mr. Peepers, and now I'm going to be waiting for the second boxed set to come out so that we can see him get married."